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Mobile Operator Three UK Suffers Network Outage UPDATE3

Friday, Feb 9th, 2024 (6:35 pm) - Score 22,760
Three-UK-SIM-Card-on-Red-Gradient-Backdrop

Some of Three UK’s mobile customers are reporting a large network outage, which appears to be hitting sporadically across various different parts of the country. The issue is also known to be impacting users of the company’s Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) partners, such as Smarty etc.

The disruption appears to have started at around 3pm and is currently ongoing. Customers report a mix of issues, from a total loss of service to only a loss of mobile broadband (4G / 5G) connectivity. All of those affected report that, aside from Wi-Fi Calling, the only service still available to them is Emergency Calling.

A spokesperson for Three UK said (X): “We are aware some of our customers are experiencing network disruption. Our engineers are working to fix the issue as quickly as possible. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.”

UPDATE 10th Feb 2024 @ 6:44am

The service appears to have been restored between around 7:30pm and 8pm last night. A spokesperson for Three UK said: “Following an issue with our network earlier for a number of customers, services are gradually recovering. We apologise for the inconvenience.”

UPDATE 11th Feb 2024 @ 8:19am

Customers of Three UK reported a second large network outage yesterday, which started at around 11:30am and continued on until around 5pm, although some people were still feeling the impact until much later. A spokesperson for the operator merely issued the same canned statement as before and, once again, failed to provide any insight into what went wrong. Hopefully there will not be a repeat of this today.

UPDATE 12th Feb 2024 @ 1:09pm

The operator’s customers have today suffered a third major network outage in the space of just four days, which we’re covering via a new article (here).

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Mark-Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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Comments
83 Responses
  1. Avatar photo guy says:

    I’m on smarty, I have my phone on aeroplane mode during the day at work so could have started earlier but I noticed at lunch time 12:00 when I left the building that I had no service. Still nothing.

    1. Avatar photo 10BaseT says:

      you should maybe turn off areoplane mode?

    2. Avatar photo JP says:

      You should STHU

    3. Avatar photo Declan M says:

      @Jp not our fault your on a rubbish network

    4. Avatar photo Grammor Polise says:

      @Declan M says

      you’re

    5. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      I was the same I was using WIFI calling without problem until i went to go out and found I had nothing. Three Business Data SIM also dead

  2. Avatar photo Jammie1408 says:

    Again! Wasn’t it before Christmas when this last happened. I really don’t get this network anymore, there infrastructure cant be that bad.

    1. Avatar photo Andrew says:

      I believe the Three Network must be attacked either from a “foreign power” OR its been disrupted from within, by unscrupulous staff. This has happened twice now in 3 months. This could be linked to the fact that this Phone Company had their Customer Service Abroad and might be attacked by hackers or some disgruntled staff who “have a score to settle” with Three.

    2. Avatar photo Joe says:

      Three are getting so bad. In my area it’s gone from a healthy 3m+ download speeds to some days I getting bits not even kbs speeds. I wish I could get out of the contract. Most days I can’t even stream Spotify or Amazon music it’s so bad.

  3. Avatar photo james smith says:

    here in south warwickshire on 9Th near 7pm Feb the 5g service is perfectly good. No issues all day

  4. Avatar photo Sleepy says:

    we had a 30second power cut at 6pm, our 3 home hub wouldnt reconnect to 4g, my phone is on 3 and worked fine, then i thought, lets see what happens if i reboot the phone, now also lost that. the home BB has just come back on, so hopefully all will be back to normal soon.

    1. Avatar photo lcb says:

      exactly. put my phone briefly into airplane mode about half three, then had the problem afterwards, everything was fine before that. might never have known anything was wrong if hadn’t done that

  5. Avatar photo Declan McGuinness says:

    Didn’t 3 have a major outage just before Christmas ?

  6. Avatar photo Mohammed Anis says:

    Rubbish network and totally unprofessional customer service. When I called to complaint I was told they “customers are expecting too much”. Sorry that I asked why my phone, home broadband, my wife’s phone, my kids phone etc all not working. They like my money but I am inconveniencing them to if I call to find out why I have no service. I will wait till all our contract ends and give business to other companies who cares.

    1. Avatar photo Stella says:

      Let us all know if you find one!

    2. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

      Surely you should have been able to put two and two together…

    3. Avatar photo Anon says:

      A large company that cares about you? Not sure if such thing exists.

      Don’t put everything on the same network, by the way. If it goes down – and everyone has issues from time to time – everything stops working.

    4. Avatar photo Fibre Scriber says:

      Getting customers wishing they were with Vodafone

    5. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      “Surely you should have been able to put two and two together…”

      Have you met Phil? LOL

  7. Avatar photo JP says:

    Hmmm seems suspect that Three keep having these sporadic issues at this time.

    Whats the half arsed excuse going to be this time I wonder.

  8. Avatar photo Ed says:

    Vodafone has had a major outage this year as well. People of the tinfoil hat persuasion might think that they are deliberate due to the need for extra investment being a central part of the argument in favour of their merger, but that’s obviously not the case. I’m sure it’s just a coincidence.

  9. Avatar photo sue says:

    ours went down during the day on thursday 8th so going on for 48 hours now. apparently after 2 days we are entitled to£8 a day refund. really compensates for not being able to sort heating, door bell, security cameras etc (not!!)

    1. Avatar photo Dave Webster says:

      Why does you heating, door bell and cameras rely on the internet?
      Only a sadist would do that to themselves willingly.

    2. Avatar photo Anon says:

      Sounds like you need a backup. Only using a network, the cheapest out there, is a single point of failure and no amount of compensation can fix that.

  10. Avatar photo Shaun Whitton says:

    All these outages have started since they done the update don’t fix was isn’t broken

  11. Avatar photo Dave says:

    I had service yesterday though I don’t this morning. Strange

  12. Avatar photo Steve says:

    I guess it’s all relative. Even the most seasoned network will have issues, nothing is perfect but I think people are less tolerant of problems nowadays. Remember years ago people used to announce their phone number when answering calls? That’s because Strowger equipment often binded on the selectors but the masses didn’t realise this and thought it was a case of fat fingers and just dialed again.

    I used to be with Virgin for broadband, over 20 years in an ex C&W franchise, I could count issues on one hand in that time it was that good. Sadly the price kept increasing to the point I had to say enough and negotiating every year became tedious. I joined Three mobile broadband on an offer at £12 per month. Over the past three years I’ve had about half a dozen drops and a week of 3G restriction about a year ago, but I’m paying a quarter of what I used to and the speed is over 70mbps so I take the rough with the smooth.

    FWIW I’ve been on all the major networks right back to Cellnet and One2One and they’ve all had good and bad points both network and customer service. I use Lebara, their customer service feels like drones talking using scripts when I have to talk to them but they’re so blooming cheap again it’s a case of taking rough with the smooth.

  13. Avatar photo Bazza says:

    My mobile internet was down all afternoon. Voice calls were unaffected for me. Service restored later yesterday evening (Friday)

  14. Avatar photo shah says:

    My mobile network is down and I believe I have made the wrong decision to join this network after 10 years and its still having the same issues…. 7 months since joined this network its down for 4th time.. Cant wait to get rid of it … no compensation given so far..

  15. Avatar photo Peter Smithson says:

    I was fine yesterday other than having to reboot the router m today (10th) no amount of rebooting will help and the status checker says there’s a problem in my area (SL0)

    Still within my one month cool down period so having second thoughts.

    Odd that my SMARTY phone has worked fine (they use Three network)

    1. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      My SMARTY phone was dead for hours.. Must have just been certain areas.

  16. Avatar photo Billy says:

    My mobile internet was down all afternoon. Voice calls were unaffected for me. Service restored later yesterday evening

    Same

  17. Avatar photo mohammed says:

    I gave up on three years ago they are full of bull if you call them they just read off a script so sad company that has bunch of robots repeating them self.

  18. Avatar photo mike says:

    Still down in the south of england

  19. Avatar photo Matt says:

    No 3 Mobile data north of Leicester today 10/2/24

  20. Avatar photo Alan says:

    iD mobile (running on Three) down yesterday evening, back up this morning, down again this afternoon. WiFi calling still working OK at least.

  21. Avatar photo Karl Betts says:

    Still Down in SE7 of London and Sidcup

  22. Avatar photo Chris says:

    I have 2 sims on smarty, one went down yesterday for a couple of hours, the other one next to it was fine, today both are still fine! Funny how it effects some and not others

  23. Avatar photo Jim says:

    Down again for me in Gloucestershire.

    I feel sorry for anyone who relies solely on Three.

    Absolute joke of a network.

  24. Avatar photo three says:

    What the hell going on Three went down again in TF7 area. Really fed up now

  25. Avatar photo Gian Mahil says:

    Its down again on Saturday 10/2/24 we need details of what is wrong and when it will be fixed.

  26. Avatar photo matt says:

    Was down for a while yesterdat, and went down again earlier today in Liverpool L5 and is yet to come back up after several hours already.

  27. Avatar photo Shamail Khan says:

    Here is Reading. Still showing no Service since morning. Shouldn’t have made the switch last year. Severely affecting work and life routine.

  28. Avatar photo Lloyd Thompson says:

    Appears to be coming back up now in Bournemouth

  29. Avatar photo Nick Roberts says:

    Luxury, 3- bars on 4G indoors and phone and data work . . . on PAYR (PayAsYou’reRobbed).

    Toy computing, the whole shebang . . . . desktops, mobiles, tablets, landline digital voice and broadband

    Looks like BT are making good progress despatching landlines down the the hole in the floor with Digital Voice . . three pop-up meetings convened on the posh side of the borough in December to introduce DV . . . then fluff-all heard since then on the topic. And the bills for the “Service” . . so inexpensive . . . NOT

  30. Avatar photo Moony says:

    Theres been issues on Saturday 10th with no 4G data and even phone calls dropping , it’s still playing up at 6pm and the call Center has been unavailable all day .

  31. Avatar photo Nick Roberts says:

    Maybe we could all petition Elon to change the orbital paths of some of the Starlink debris so that they could “Buzz” the UK preferentially on a regular basis.

    Alternatively, perhaps junior doctors could be persuaded to operate re-instated semaphore towers for an increase in wages ?

    All good stuff here . . .no rubbish !

  32. Avatar photo JP says:

    Been all over the place in Birmingham today still.

    1. Avatar photo Nick says:

      Nothing at all in South London for nearly 6 hours.

  33. Avatar photo Craig says:

    This what happens you when you don’t have a backup network like EE never down always running 24 hours a day.

    1. Avatar photo Nick says:

      Its happened regionally on EE in the past. But this current fault is also effecting their contact numbers. It’s occurring to all 3G,4G and 5G bands right now. It’s not common for Hutchison Three. I’d say a hack is behind it

  34. Avatar photo Nick says:

    I can’t even call Three on any of their phone numbers they just ring and ring. Luckily I have a dual sim phone with another networks sim.

    This is becoming common O2,Lyca,Vectone and Three

    1. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      Isn’t Three all cloud based now? maybe someone pulled out the wrong cord!

  35. Avatar photo Jack says:

    Been down most of this afternoon with Smarty. Throwing up PDP Aithentication errors on data. Not at all handy when roaming in France on Orange, Bouygues and SFR when I’m relying on a bit of data giving me my sat nav.

  36. Avatar photo Nick Roberts says:

    01:15 Still OK in NW London, 3 bars on 4G indoors, mobile phone and data fine.

  37. Avatar photo Aileen says:

    No issues yesterday. Turned phone on this morning and no signal or service at all

  38. Avatar photo RightSaidFred says:

    Meanwhile, some of us can’t get a data connection even when all of the networks are up and running properly.

    1. Avatar photo Sonic says:

      Exactly that. How can you tell when they are down? Even when they are “up”, I can barely access any data. So, meh. Business as usual I guess.

  39. Avatar photo Michael V says:

    No issues near me, that I noticed anyway. Cardiff and Vale.
    Crap happens, so no point getting annoyed about it.
    Anyway, best network!

  40. Avatar photo Phil says:

    I was trying to configure my SIM as a brand new Three customer yesterday. Then I realised it wasn’t me it was them.

    What are the odds?

    1. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      Cancel and get out while you can. I did

  41. Avatar photo Peter Singh says:

    We have 5 connections on 3, 2 phones are working fine full signal other 3 zero signal tried everything, manual network selection also reatarting phones. Seem like not all numbers are affected.

  42. Avatar photo Mel says:

    I have Three broadband and had an outage that started last Sunday (4th Feb) and only came back on Thursday night (8th).
    All Three were saying on the phone and on their network status page was that they are working in my area on improvements to the network.
    The network is working since but speeds are much slower and not as reliable since.

    1. Avatar photo Buggerlugz says:

      “working in my area on improvements to the network.” ah that old chestnut…….had that for the past 3 years in my area. It actually means they’re doing absolutely nothing to remedy the situation.

  43. Avatar photo John says:

    Absolutely shocking service, still cannot get through to a human being, went in local 3 shop yesterday only to be told ‘sorry darlin no idea’

  44. Avatar photo A Stevens says:

    Birmingham, yesterday (Sat 10th) lunchtime – my 5G signal vanished and all data service stopped. Cell signal remained at full power for calls, but zero data for around 1hr. Restarted phone, no difference of course. It came back early afternoon and all seemed normal again.

  45. Avatar photo Matt says:

    Still down in Ware, East Herts!

  46. Avatar photo Peter Smithson says:

    Working on Sunday but back down again around 11 on Monday 12th – pathetic. Lucky my Smarty phone still works (somehow)

  47. Avatar photo Anon says:

    The is down again in Edinburgh, as of 12 Feb 2024 11am.

  48. Avatar photo Gavin says:

    I’ve not had any issues until this morning.

    Trying to call someone and after the usual ringing sounds it changes tone and nobody answers.

  49. Avatar photo sean says:

    Calls failing for me in the last half an hour or so from multiple locations.

  50. Avatar photo Chris says:

    Middlesbrough area down, no signal at all, no issues experienced until 11:15 this morning

  51. Avatar photo Sian says:

    It’s down again right now 🙁

    1. Avatar photo I love Starlink says:

      Not for me – Sheffield area on Smarty anyway

  52. Avatar photo Eddie says:

    I am in London/Brent and no connection at all too

  53. Avatar photo A super happy Three customer. They are the best!!!! says:

    Wales – down, total blackout. AGAIN.

    What a joke.

  54. Avatar photo hammy says:

    My 3 SIM hasn’t worked since before Friday, even after the outages got fixed for most people. Glad they’re not my main network.

  55. Avatar photo chris says:

    so is that all mobile operators who have had their outage now?

  56. Avatar photo alerton says:

    until this morning Hull was working fine whilst others were reporting issues; though today nobody could call me but three could and did send me a few text messages saying that i had missed a call, not that i could return any calls anyway lol. also, mobile broadband was down too but only on 1 sim whilst other 3 sims still worked fine, all very strange.

  57. Avatar photo Richard Dillinger says:

    Another excuse to bash 3 from all the users, what I find most interesting is that users expect business level service for that amount of money – it reminds me of people who fly Ryanair / WizzAir and moan when they dont get champagne level service.

  58. Avatar photo Vlasta Fowkes says:

    I can’t send or receive texts or emails but it works on WhatsApp. Android phone.

  59. Avatar photo Dave says:

    Disastrous network provider. Third network outage in two weeks.

    For Home 4G customers Three have also blocking a number of services on their 3internet APN since October 2023 – during the switch to IPv6 for 4G Home Broadband customers Three have made a number of configuration errors that they are refusing to acknowledge and their engineers will only agree to look into once enough complaints have been made online. I have had no access to Internet banking, Spotify and my children have rarely gained access to Roblox with consistent errors and disconnects and logging into EA gaming services have been non existent of server errors and disconnects – This is Three standard practice judging from historical issues – e.g. over a month long Xbox live and GamePass download block which Three Tech support and engineers denied and blamed Microsoft until week three of the debacle – which Three eventually admitted was an error on their side.

    Not only this but they are now denying their customers, such as myself access to advanced features in their home B535 routers, such as adding my VPN to the router which would allow me to temporarily workaround Three’s calamity.

    The only option is to change your APN to three.co.uk – this will give power back over router settings and full access to the internet but we should not have to change our APNs as a backup because the primary Home Broadband APN is unusable due to mismanagement.

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